My church is located pretty much in the middle of nowhere. If you want to see just how remote it is, you can look at it on a Google map here. It’s in a very beautiful part of God’s creation, and a very beautiful thing happens there every Sunday. See, even though this church is in the middle of nowhere, thousands go there to worship. And in the summer, after service, my church feeds people. I mean like, sometimes, a thousand people. (So times 4, that makes 4,000–a month, hence the subtitle) And they do it for free! Can you believe it? And no, that’s not why thousands go there. Attendance was like that before the free lunch. But still, they feed four thousand a month–for free.
How Jesus Loved People–Jesus Feeds Four Thousand
On one occasion Jesus fed 4,000. And on another he fed 5,000. So on two occasions, that we know of, when the crowd following Jesus became hungry, he fed them.
Love Like Jesus
I know this guy named Frank Fredrickson who quit college and went to work as a maintenance man in a fitness facility. Wow, what a shock to his system. He told me he had no idea how lonely it would be. He always had a group of friends to hang with when he was in school, but now his only contact with people happened at work. And as a maintenance man, well, that contact was pretty scarce. He told me once, the loneliness was like a physical ache sometimes.
The other thing he hadn’t counted on was how hard it is to make it in the world, financially. I saw his refrigerator more than once with just a half gallon of ice-cream in the freezer and nothing in the fridge. (Yeah, that’s what I thought too–strange eating habits.)
After a long time another maintenance man was hired, and he and Frank became friends. This new guy started inviting Frank over for dinner regularly. Frank told me this was the biggest blessing in his life at the time. He told me dinner at his friend’s house is where he felt the most loved. He told me he’ll never forget that hospitality. Frank said there were many times he had to force himself to leave and go home to his apartment, where the only thing waiting for him was a half gallon of ice-cream.
On one occasion, when there were people to feed, Jesus said to the disciples, “You give them something to eat.” (Matthew 14:16) I think that command still stands today. There are people out there who, if you invited them to dinner, you would make their week. You could have an impact on someone in the same way that other maintenance man impacted Frank.
So how do you love like Jesus?
It’s very simple: Find someone who’s hungry, and feed them.
You can too.
“I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat.” -Jesus Christ, Matthew 15:32
[Image via Tony Fischer Photography – Creative Commons]
[You might also like: Love Like Jesus–for One of the Least]
The story about the college dropout is used with permission, though he asked that I protect his anonymity. The name Frank Fredrickson is fictitious.
This takes me back to my childhood, Kurt.
When I lived with my Grandma, she sent me off to deliver food to the less fortunate in our neighborhood. I thank God for her example, and I’m grateful that it stuck with me. I am blessed to be able to bless others when they are in need. Elderly whom we know don’t necessarily eat well, and so we all have the opportunity to give them a home cooked meal; when folks are low on cash, we have the opportunity to make sure they have food.
“Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry, and feed you; or thirsty, and give you a drink? When did we see you as a stranger, and take you in; or naked, and clothe you? When did we see you sick, or in prison, and come to you?’ “The King will answer them, ‘Most certainly I tell you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
And, this is equally as important:
Mat 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.
Great comment Irene. Thanks for stopping by.
Wow, I think I began to tear up Kurt as I was reading this! I was so sad for Frank, especially when you said that you saw his fridge and he only had a half-gallon tub of ice cream.
You make a great point: what good is it if we see our brothers and sisters hungry and cold and we say, “Go! Be warm and be filled,” and we do nothing for them?
So funny but I just spoke with Frank’s friend on the phone today. He was one of the loneliest people I ever knew, but now he’s doing great! He’s a believer and his life is anchored in Christ.
That’s a great scripture from James to go with this post. Thank you for your comment Peter and for all you do!
Thanks for this Kurt. This is something that came to light while I was in Belize. The dinner table means something to them. More than being hungry, it’s a time to fellowship. Some of the greatest time of fellowship and sharing is around the table. Keep writing bro. You are a great encouragement! God bless you!
Cameron, so great to hear from you. Thanks for stopping by. I didn’t know that about Belize. May I ask, why you traveled there?